I want to start off by saying Riot has actually done a pretty good job of incorporating variety as far as champions and builds go, for the most part. Yeah there are some classes that need item reworks, there is a decent amount of flexibility. And I think it's really cool how mages can be played in all 3 lanes, stuff like Yasuo can be played as ADC...PLUS we've got an enchanter jungler in Ivern, an assassin support in Pyke, a ADC/Support hyrbid in Senna. That is all great stuff.
Now here's where we are lacking. They lack of variety in approach to the game. Now this skirmish focused, burst damage meta is I think just the flavor of the season. But the core of the problem is that Riot has essentially decided there is just one way to play the game and is demanding that everyone play that style of game. Not does that alienate players who prefer a particular style, but it alienates players like myself who want to play a bunch of different style across many many games, and who believe the strategic elements of the game should be equally impactful with the mechanical and individual focused elements of the game.
- Champions are only viable if they are generalists. You have to have a decent lane phase to be a good champ, you have to be able to do meaningful damage pre 6, etc etc.
- Enchanters have gotten pigeon-holed to the support role while every other class is expanding. Yes I know playing against something like Lulu or Karma who literally just neuralizes lane can be boring, but I think thematically and strategically it's very interesting. As an enemy you have the option of ignoring the enchanter solo laner, and focusing on trying to set back the hyper carry who will be the engine of the team comp, or you can focus the enchanter themselves and try to win through side lane dominance, opting out of the team fighting all together. Which brings me to my next point...
- Gutting split pushing as a full win-condition strat. Right now split pushing is more or less a way for solo laners to soak up farm and just generates pressure to then generate conflict...which brings me to my next next point
- Too much emphasis on conflict. Yes fighting is fun and exciting. But it's not the only thing in the game. This focus makes the game too one dimensional, eliminating a lot of options (including the above mentioned enchanter/support jungler). I for one, thought the hit n run counterjungling vision mongering Nunu jungle was very fun to play and to watch. And really wasn't even that frustrating to play against as an opponent, but alas all the value got sucked out there.
I will say that I understand that when a game becomes too broad you risk the Dota feel where new players are just astronomically overwhelmed. But I think LOL was never even close to that bad at it's most crazy. And any top tier competitive PVP game inherently should offer favorable advantages to students of the game over those more casual players who just happen to be mechanically gifted.